The UN’s Habitat data, collected from national census offices, gives the number one spot to Dhaka as the densest country in the world, with a density of 44,500 people per sq km, Agencies report.
It’s mostly Asian cities in the top of the list: Mumbai is second, while Manila is fourth, with Singapore high up as well. Medellin is South America’s most dense city at third overall, with Casablanca and Lagos in Africa close behind, reports The Guardian.
However, cities are all about density – groups of strangers agreeing to spend their lives in close proximity, whether for protection, mutual opportunity or simply the need to be together. In a world whose human population is now more than 50% urban, this condition is shared by most of humanity.
The simplest definition of density is the amount of people divided by the land they occupy. On this basis, the 7 billion living humans divided by the land surface of the Earth means there is a population density of roughly 50 people for every sq km. Evenly spread over all the world’s mountains, deserts and other terrains, we’d be standing about 150 metres away from our neighbour.
While there is no internationally agreed definition of the boundary of a city, measuring the density of “urban agglomerations” – including adjacent suburbia as well as the administrative city proper – gives a decent comparative picture.